Nov. 11, 2006
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) -- Darren McFadden ran for 181 yards and two touchdowns and threw a touchdown pass, leading No. 11 Arkansas to a convincing 31-14 victory over No. 13 Tennessee on Saturday night.
The Razorbacks (9-1, 6-0) can clinch a spot in the Southeastern Conference title game with a win next weekend at Mississippi State. They've won nine straight since a season-opening loss to Southern California -- their longest streak since 1988 -- and when this one was over, the crowd began chanting "BCS."
Suddenly, a spot in the national championship game for Arkansas doesn't sound far fetched.
McFadden, the dynamic sophomore, is being touted by Razorbacks fans as a Heisman Trophy candidate. He played tailback, quarterback and even a little wide receiver against Tennessee, and the Volunteers (7-3, 3-3) were never able to stop him.
Arkansas took a 7-0 lead in the first quarter when Casey Dick lofted a pass to the corner of the end zone and Marcus Monk ran under it for a 10-yard touchdown.
McFadden took over from there. The Razorbacks have used their star running back at quarterback lately -- out of the shotgun, he either hands off, keeps the ball himself or even passes. He ran for a 17-yard touchdown out of that formation early in the second quarter, then threw to Monk for a 12-yard score to make it 21-7.
It was the second touchdown pass of the season for McFadden in two attempts. He played some quarterback in high school.
McFadden added a 5-yard scoring run late in the second quarter -- again after taking the snap himself -- and the Razorbacks led 28-7 at halftime.
Redshirt freshman Jonathan Crompton started at quarterback for Tennessee instead of Erik Ainge, who has had ankle problems. Arkansas pressured Crompton throughout, and he finished 16-of-34 for 174 yards. Crompton threw touchdown passes to Robert Meachem and Bret Smith.
Casey Dick went 10-of-15 for 154 yards for Arkansas. Dick replaced freshman Mitch Mustain after one series last week at South Carolina and played well enough to win the starting quarterback job.
Monk had eight catches for 137 yards.
McFadden set a school record by surpassing 180 yards rushing for fifth time in his career. His only big mistake was a fumble around the Tennessee goal line in the third quarter.
Arkansas' most recent eight-game winning streak had been an 8-0 start in 1998. That one was snapped when the Razorbacks wasted an 18-point lead in a loss at Tennessee. The Vols won the national championship that season.
Arkansas had no trouble holding on this time.
Tennessee was knocked out of the SEC title picture last weekend. Hours after the loss to LSU, three Tennessee players were arrested after police were called to break up a disturbance at a club. Two of them -- fullback David Holbert and safety Antonio Wardlow -- were suspended for this week's game. The other -- tailback Arian Foster -- was suspended for the first half.
Foster had one carry against the Razorbacks.
The game drew a stadium-record 76,564.